Lately I’ve been seeing and hearing a lot of people around me express how bad they think their life is. Some use the term “I hate my life” loosely when things don’t go their way; if they’re late for work or for the simple fact that they have to work.
Little by little, my teapot of anger has been boiling and I’ve had enough. I would give anything to have their problems.
Healthy people’s problems do sound much more appealing than the ones I have.
Over the years I’ve learned to be grateful for everything in life, both good and bad. Perhaps it’s because of everything I’ve endured with my health and pain, but either way I feel fortunate to be where I am today. I try my best not to complain about the small stuff, because I know it’s not worth getting upset over.
Am I really going to lose my cool if my kids are rolling in dirt while wearing clean clothes? No way. I would rather watch them play and enjoy it.
Granted, there are some situations that deserve a “I hate my life” scream, but if you sit down and think about it you’ll realize that life is precious and it needs to be valued. Your problems, issues, and struggles may not be anything compared to someone else’s. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in ourselves that we don’t ask others how they are or what’s going on in their lives.
I have acquaintances who pretend like my pain doesn’t exist and they give me the same remedy of “see a doctor.” I see my doctor weekly, email him regularly and on occasions I visit twice when the pain is unbearable.
I’ve told people over and over again that I don’t expect anyone to fix me or find a cure. Sometimes I just want to vent and — instead of being the shoulder to cry on — I need one that won’t mind my tears for a change.
If you lost your job, you can collect unemployment while you’re looking for a new job. If you totaled your car, you can buy a new one and hope that your insurance covers it.
Pain sufferers can’t go out and buy new bodies, although I wish we could. Pain sufferers don’t get to choose their disease or the cause of their severe pain.
Pain sufferers take it one step at a time: enjoying the good days that bring us peace and relief, but fighting through the bad days when we feel like we just can’t go on.
Some may think this sounds bitter, but it truly isn’t. I just want people to realize that what they have is golden. If you’re not sick, you don’t have cancer or you’re not in pain, then your life is good. Be grateful for that. The fact that you woke up today is a miracle.
Everyday I wake up and thank God for giving my family and I another day of life. Even if I don’t wake up pain free, at least I’m still here, and that alone is my biggest blessing.
I just hope people realize what they have and start enjoying the little things in life. But if you feel the urge to say “I hate my life,” think about how many people are dealing with severe pain and diseases with no cure.
Then you’ll be thankful it isn’t you.
Arlene Grau lives in Lakewood, California. She suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, lupus, migraine, vasculitis, and Sjogren’s disease.
The information in this column is not intended to be considered as professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Only your doctor can do that! It is for informational purposes only and represent the author’s personal experiences and opinions alone. It does not inherently or expressly reflect the views, opinions and/or positions of National Pain Report or Microcast Media.